By Chris Griffy

Ah, Labor Day. Started in 1894 to celebrate the contributions of the worker to America’s economy, Labor Day today is most celebrated as the last nice weather three day weekend of the year. Families are looking for fun activities, both indoor and outdoor, to make some memories before the holiday season hits full swing. Fortunately, Atlanta has plenty of options for those looking for a good time over Labor Day weekend 2017.

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AJC Decatur Book Festival
Downtown Decatur Square
101 E Court Square
Decatur, GA 30030
(404) 666-2112

Date: Friday, Sept. 1 through Sunday, Sept. 3, 2017

Book lovers in the Atlanta area will want to be in Decatur on Labor Day weekend for one of the area’s biggest book festivals. Sprawling across Decatur Square, The Decatur Book Festival offers multiple vendors and lectures and signings from over 600 writers. Marquee names include Vince Dooley, John T. Edge, Daniel Handler (aka Lemony Snicket), and Henry Winkler. There are also classes for aspiring authors via the Decatur Writer’s Studio.

Sky High Hot Air Balloon Festival
Callaway Garden
4500 Southern Pine Drive
Pine Mountain, GA 31822
(706) 663-2281

Date: Friday, Sept. 1 through Sunday, Sept. 3, 2017

If you love the beauty and gravity defying splendor of hot air balloons, it’s worth the hour drive from Atlanta to Pine Mountain for the Sky High Hot Air Balloon Festival. Celebrating its 19th year, the Sky High Hot Air Balloon Festival will kick off Friday night, Sept. 1 with the Friday Night Balloon Glow. It continues all weekend with live music from The Regulars, Kyle Wilson, and Money Shot, a kid’s zone, a classic car show, and beach activities. For amateur photographers, there will also be a “Mastering Night Photography” class.

Dragon Con
Hyatt Regency Atlanta
265 West Peachtree St. N.W.
Atlanta, GA 30303
(404) 669-0773

Date: Friday, Sept. 1 through Sunday, Sept. 4, 2017

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Labor Day weekend is when one of America’s biggest fan conventions is held, Dragon Con. Dragon Con’s sprawling convention space caters to a multitude of fandoms, from science fiction to fantasy, comic books to cosplay, and music to theater. This year’s Dragon Con features some of the biggest names in movies, television, music, and comics. Highlighted guests include author Kevin J. Anderson, Torchwood actor John Barrowman, Guardians of the Galaxy and The Walking Dead star Michael Rooker, Star Trek’s William Shatner, and musician Aurelio Voltaire.

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Marietta Art in the Park
Marietta Square
50 N. Park Square
Marietta, GA 30060
(404) 966-8497

Date: Saturday, Sept. 2 through Monday, Sept. 4, 2017

For 31 years, art lovers in the Atlanta area have been flocking to nearby Marietta each Labor Day weekend for Marietta Art in the Park. While the big draw is the over 175 fine artists from across the country, this free art show features fun activities for the entire family. There is the Chalk Spot, a place for children of all ages to indulge their own artistic muses. Also featured is the Children’s Art Alley, a make and take area. There will also be food trucks, and special offers from area restaurants, shops, and galleries.

House in the Park
Grant Park
840 Cherokee Ave. S.E.
Atlanta, GA 30312

Date: Sunday, Sept. 3, 2017

Electronic Dance Music, or EDM for short, is the fastest growing genre in the country, with entire multi-day festivals dedicated to it. For Atlanta residents who want a little EDM, and specifically the subgenre of house music, in their Labor Day weekend, head over to Grant Park for House in the Park. The free event will feature four DJ; Kai Alce, Kemit, Salah Ananse, and Ramon Rawsoul. The event draws approximately 15,000 attendees each year.

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